Minnesotans for Pipeline Cleanup Speak Out Against Line 3 Abandonment

Enbridge has operated pipelines in Minnesota for more than 60 years.

GRAND RAPIDS, Minn. – Some Minnesota landowners have a strong message for Enbridge. Clean up your mess.

They were in Grand Rapids today letting Enbridge know they are not backing down when it comes to what they consider the abandonment of Line 3.

The group Minnesotans for Pipeline Cleanup released a report explaining the financial, legal and environmental impact they believe Enbridge’s Line 3 will have on Minnesota landowners.

The meeting was held at the St. Andrews Lutheran Church in Grand Rapids. That specific location was chosen because parts of Line 3 cross through the church property.

From a faith perspective Pastor David Anderson says it’s important to protect the earth.

“If you’re no longer using this particular pipeline clean it up, take it out and let’s move on,” said Anderson.

The big worry is what could happen if the old pipeline is not removed once a new pipeline is ready to use.

“We don’t know necessarily what happens if a pipeline gets left in the ground whether it’s been cleared up or whether it’s not been cleaned up, whether it’s rusting or whether it’s intact,” said Anderson.

Enbridge has operated pipelines in Minnesota for more than 60 years.

“The most important part about this is that whether the pipelines are operational or not, we’re responsible for the pipelines,” said Line 3 Project Director Barry Simonson.

Enbridge says it wants landowners to feel safe with the line three deactivation.

“The deactivation process is essentially a process by which Enbridge will be purging all of the oil or pushing the oil into tankage at Clearbrook terminal as well as Superior terminal,” said Simonson.

Part of the process for Enbridge includes cleaning hydrocarbons out of the pipeline.

“We’re also going to be segmenting the pipeline in certain locations meaning we’ll cut it and cap it, so that it’s an isolated section so that would then prohibit any water drainage in certain wetlands,” said Simonson.

Colleen Bernu lives in Sawyer, Minnesota, but felt it was her duty to be present.

“Someone is going to have to deal with this at some point,” said Bernu.

Her property is on the main corridor and six pipelines run along her property.

“Lines 67,13, 4, 3, 2 and 1,” said Bernu.

She wants Enbridge to legally be held responsible for any leakage or contamination and says this will set a precedent.

“I would like to see the same rules and regulations applied to pipelines that are applied to fuel filling stations when they close. Those gas tanks are required to be removed from the ground,”  said Bernu.

Enbridge says they will continue to monitor the pipeline corridor and continue to have it protected to prohibit corrosion from occurring.

For more information on the Enbridge Line 3 Deactivation, click here.

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